Want to enjoy tea at work? Many of you will be making it in some type of lunchroom setup. So, how do you handle this tea making? In a word: teabags!
Yes, teabags can rescue you from “lunchroom tea” if they are the right teabags. Let’s face it, tea in the workplace lunchroom can be a rather less-than-stellar experience. However, there are things you can do to elevate it above the totally lame and mundane, even if you have to stick with bagged versus loose teas.
Not all teabags are created equal, according to tea expert Nigel Melican. What goes in those bags varies in quality. For example, Harney & Sons bags are full of big leaf pieces, not fannings and dust. But even teabags filled with dust vary in quality, with brands like PG Tips, Barry’s and Typhoo using only select teas in their bags. Devonshire Tea owners Gavin Sheppard and Debbie Kay looked carefully among the tea gardens of Kenya before selecting four of them to supply the tea that is blended and processed to fill their bags.
Compare these with the dust in bags from the dollar store which taste like they are filled with 10-year-old tea dust gathered up from the tea factory floor after the good teabags were filled and stored in a musty building somewhere. Sadly, most of the teabags available at workplace lunchrooms are the kind that seem stale. So, it seems imperative to bring your own teabags to work and store them in an airtight container, ready to bring you tea relief from the pressures of the day. If you can avoid the string-and-tag bags in favor of the square bags or even the round kind, that will help, too. Call me fussy, but that little metal staple holding the string to the bag and the string itself seem to me to affect the tea taste. And more than once, the tag has fallen in the cup while the tea is steeping. Bleh!
If you have a particular way of preparing your tea at home, try to duplicate that at work as close as possible. Have a mug there to use; this will help you avoid the taste of Styrofoam or plastic or those coated paper cups in your tea. If you usually add in a particular honey, keep a bottle of it at work with your teabags. Or you could have some lemon concentrate on hand, if that is your preference. Like raw sugar? Some workplaces have this available, but if yours doesn’t, you can find it at the store in individual packets to keep handy. Be careful not to have something that will attract ants, though. The boss might get a bit miffed!
Yes, indeed, you can have tea your way — or close to it — even in the workplace lunchroom. A little ingenuity is all it takes.
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